Eastbourne Borough Council secured a second bail-out or ‘Extraordinary Financial Support’ from the government this week.

Eastbourne MP Caroline Ansell said: “I’m glad because I supported the council’s request when I spoke to the Secretary of State last week. Had the government not stepped in, council services for local people would have been on the line.

“The cash provides breathing space, but is no lasting solution, as the council’s financial troubles pre-date emergency accommodation costs and covid. You may remember the council’s attempt to sell off farmland on the Downs, to balance the books back in 2017, before a huge public outcry checked those plans. 

The difficult truth is that EBC is paying a serious £6.5 million a year in debt interest payments. It means that EBC is now the only council in East Sussex that makes the lowest income families pay council tax, which just can’t be fair. 

I don’t make Council decisions but I will continue to give its senior officers and our councillors, of both political parties, my support.  The needs of our town will always come first. Nowhere does this apply more readily than to deliver the homes we need. If the Council still can’t build at Bedfordwell after all these years, I will urge them to sell. There has already been an offer, and time costs too.”